Are you sick and tired of busy supermarket queues? Do you order fresh herbs online, only to find out you have to consume them on the day of delivery, or they’ll exceed their use-by date? The fact is, buying fresh herbs means you waste a lot of money. So why not grow your own?
There are many benefits to growing fresh herbs, including saving money, eating healthier and getting more fresh air.
Here are ten easy to grow herbs for beginners.
If you’re a fan of Italian food, then you’ve almost definitely heard of oregano. It’s a flavourful herb that pairs well with tomato-based sauces and vinaigrettes. But oregano also had many medicinal qualities.
You’ll often find it in medicines that treat bloating, heartburn, bronchitis and asthma. Better still, oregano is incredibly easy to grow, and beginners will have no problem cultivating this delicious herb.
Ideally, it would help if you grew oregano in spring because it thrives in sunlight. The plant prefers light soils and areas that get some sunlight. The herb won’t do well in a shaded garden.
Correct us if we’re wrong, but we think that coriander is one of nature’s most delicious creations. It’s full of flavour and will often be added to Mexican and Indian dishes, including spicy sauces, marinades and curries.
The only downside of coriander is you’ll have to sow seeds every couple of weeks. You should water it regularly, but drain the plant so leaves can develop instead of it flowering.
Try to make sure you plant the seeds in an area with plenty of sunlight and minimal shade. North facing gardens won’t get enough sunlight to grow coriander, so check your outdoor space’s direction.
Parsley is known for its light taste, making it ideal as an accompaniment for soups, salads and sauces. You’re probably familiar with parsley sauce that pairs well with fish, so why not grow your own?
The best thing about growing parsley is you can use your windowsill until your garden warms up. The herb has a slow germination process, so you should soak them in water overnight before planting.
Make sure you use moist soil but don’t overwater it, or the seeds won’t flourish.
Rosemary is a diverse herb, which is delicious in soups, salads and stews. It’s particularly popular with chicken and ideal to grow if you’re a fan of Mediterranean cuisine. The herb is probably the easiest to sow on our list because it can flourish in north-facing gardens.
You can also pick the leaves throughout the year, so it’s an ideal way to save money at the supermarket while still enjoying this diverse herb.
A favourite among people in the UK, chives are a relative of the mighty onion – and they pack a lot of flavours. They’re ideally paired with soups, jacket potatoes and omelettes or with homemade crisps.
To grow chives successfully, you should plant them directly in the ground during March and April. North facing gardens aren’t suitable for chives, and you should keep the soil well-drained too.
If you’re feeling ambitious, then you can try to grow mint from the seed. But, we’d advise buying young plants from your local garden centre. They’re easier to maintain, and you’ll be able to control the growth more.
When mint isn’t planted in pots, the roots spread out and can impact the growth of other plants, vegetables and herbs. While growing mint might seem complicated, it’s a versatile herb that is a fantastic addition to green tea or chocolate desserts.
Basil is one of the most popular herbs to grow because you don’t even need a garden. Planting containers and a windowsill that gets a lot of sunlight will be perfect for the herb to flourish.
It’s another essential ingredient in Italian cuisine, but basil is also a medicinal herb with various health applications. You can use it for stomach complaints, fluid retention, snake bites and worm infections.
To grow basil successfully, you should use a windowsill that points to the south or west and gets a lot of sunlight.
Dill adds extra flavour to salads, soups and seafood, so it’s ideal if you like cooking. The main thing you should remember about growing dill is that the roots don’t take well to any disturbance. It would be best if you grew them in a stable position and not move them around.
The herb flourishes in sunlight and won’t do well in a north-facing garden. During spring and summer, you can pick fresh dill and add it to your dishes. Towards the end of the summer, the seeds will darken. You can collect them in paper bags and grind them to make a dry herb mix.
Fennel is another herb that pairs well with seafood, but it also contains an abundance of vitamin C and other nutrients. Some people even use fennel when they’re dieting because it can suppress the appetite.
You should grow the fennel in a south or west-facing garden and harvest the leaves in the spring and autumn. Fennel grows well in sunlight, but it can flourish in partial shade too.
It’s probably most famous for its combination with onion to make stuffing, but sage has a diverse range of uses. It’s also straightforward to grow, and it will flourish in any garden – including north-facing spaces!
You can harvest sage year-round, but we recommend using horticultural fleece during the winter months to protect the plant. The one thing sage plants hate is wet soil. Keep the area well-drained, and make sure you sow the seeds in a sunny location.
Growing herbs in your garden can help you live a healthier lifestyle and save money on groceries. While it might take some trial and error to find the right areas, it’s cheaper than buying fresh herbs at the supermarket every week.
If you’re new to gardening, it’s probably best to stick with easier herbs like basil, then work your way up to the more complex ones. Not only do edible gardens offer a healthier lifestyle, but gardening can also improve your physical and mental wellbeing.
Whether you have plenty of outdoor space or a small windowsill area, there are solutions available to grow herbs. With the proper support and advice, anyone can reap the benefits of edible gardens.